VCI on the TTIP resolution of the European Parliament (EP)

Chances of regulatory cooperation not realised

The German chemical industry association (VCI) is critical of the European Parliament’s position for excluding the EU chemicals regulation REACH from the planned regulatory cooperation under TTIP. At no time did the German chemical industry – as well as the European Commission - consider any lowering of safety standards. Instead it is committed to REACH. Moreover, VCI’s director-general Utz Tillman emphasised that the topic of investor protection must continuously be discussed within the upcoming negotiations.

VCI's director-general Utz tillmann comments the EP resolution on TTIP: "Especially regulatory cooperation would give the parties the chance of an approximation of standards in the chemicals legislation - in the long run and on a high level." - Photo: © European Union 2015 - EP
VCI's director-general Utz tillmann comments the EP resolution on TTIP: "Especially regulatory cooperation would give the parties the chance of an approximation of standards in the chemicals legislation - in the long run and on a high level." - Photo: © European Union 2015 - EP

The German chemical industry association Verband der Chemischen Industrie (VCI) is critical of the European Parliament’s position for excluding the EU chemicals regulation REACH and its implementation from the planned regulatory cooperation under the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). This stance is taken in today’s EP resolution.

VCI director-general Utz Tillmann: “With this position the European Parliament makes regulatory cooperation in the chemicals sector near-impossible. But especially regulatory cooperation would give the parties the chance of an approximation of standards in the chemicals legislation - in the long run and on a high level. Should the EP position prevail in the further course of the negotiations, Tillmann fears that unnecessary duplication and bureaucracy costs will become firmly rooted in the chemicals sector and stand in the way of any meaningful approximation.

The EP position comes as a surprise to the VCI, particularly against the backdrop of the negotiating paper on regulatory cooperation by the Commission that was published in early May 2015. Tillmann: “In that document the Commission makes quite clear that negotiations on an approximation of any regulation can only take place if no standards are lowered. Furthermore, all decisions invariably need to be in the common interest of both parties.”

The VCI director-general explains: “We are greatly disappointed at this resolution, because we have always taken seriously the concerns of the Members of the European Parliament, and at no time did we consider any lowering of safety standards. The German chemical industry is committed to REACH.”

Continue the efforts in investor protection

The European Parliament also addressed the topic of investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS). In view of the difficult efforts to find a political compromise in this field, VCI director-general Tillmann emphasises: “Investor protection under TTIP is a necessary and responsible contribution to the shaping of globalisation. The Commission should continue its negotiations with the USA on this form of protection. Further developments - like the setting up of an appeal body - could be proposed as a signal to the European Parliament. Whether an international investment court is among such further developments in the medium or long term should be discussed and examined within multilateral negotiations; this cannot be done overnight. Until then, internationally operating companies continue to need ad hoc tribunals in accordance with bilateral agreements.”


The VCI represents the politico-economic interests of over 1,650 German chemical companies and German subsidiaries of foreign businesses. For this purpose, the VCI is in contact with politicians, public authorities, other industries, science and media.The VCI stands for over 90 percent of the chemical industry in Germany. In 2014 the German chemical industry realised sales of more than 190 billion euros and employed 444,800 staff.

Contact: VCI Press Dept., Phone: +49 69 2556-1496, E-Mail: presse@vci.de
Please note: VCI news about the chemical industry is also available via Twitter: http://twitter.com/chemieverband

For questions or suggestions, please feel free to contact us.

Contacts

Jürgen Udwari

E-Mail: udwari@vci.de